Dei'ah veDibur - Information & Insight

A Window into the Chareidi World

22 Kislev 5764 - December 17, 2003 | Mordecai Plaut, director Published Weekly









Produced and housed by
Shema Yisrael Torah Network
Shema Yisrael Torah Network











Huge Moonies Convention in Jerusalem
by Betzalel Kahn

Members of the International Inter-Religious Association for World Peace have been making concerted efforts to penetrate chareidi areas in Jerusalem. On Monday Mayor Lupoliansky asked the heads of community administrations not to cooperate with this dangerous missionary organization.

This organization is currently organizing a "Peace Gathering" slated to take place in Jerusalem during Chanukah, but it was recently identified by the heads of Lev L'Achim's anti- missionary department as the operational branch of the Moonies (Unification Church), based in Korea and the US.

The missionary group, headed by a Korean named Sun Yung Moon, was mentioned as early as 16 years ago in a report by the Tassa-Glazer Knesset Commission, which was appointed by the Israeli government to investigate the dangers and damage caused by cults in Israel. The commission determined that the Moonies pose one of the greatest threats to the public welfare.

A delegation of high-ranking members of the missionary group arrived from the US several weeks ago. Using a number of rooms at the Ramada Renaissance Hotel in Jerusalem as their base, and in coordination with the Israeli Moonie group, they are running a large operations headquarters with generous funding and resources to organize an enormous gathering whose participants will supposedly include representatives from Korea, Japan, the US and Europe. Organizers say 2,000 people from around the world have already arrived in Israel to participate in the gathering and another 1,000 are expected to arrive by the end of this week. They hope numerous Israelis will also take part.

As part of preparations for the gathering many rabbonim were invited to participate in a special convention scheduled to take place on Monday at the Ramada Hotel. Mayors and heads of local authorities were invited to a weekend at the Plaza Hotel in Jerusalem at the missionaries' expense, aimed at increasing the number of participants in the Peace Gathering.

Lev L'Achim activists discovered Peace Gathering organizers are being headed by Hod Ben-Tzvi of Maaleh Adumim, the head of the Moonies' activities in Israel, who has long used the issue of "peace" to promote his missionary work.

In Iyar, Ben-Tzvi held a conference for Jews and members of other religions at the Hyatt Hotel in Jerusalem. The climax of the conference was the signing of the Jerusalem Proclamation. In reports several conference organizers and participants sent to Moon they explicitly noted their success in bringing the participants of members of the two religions to their goal, Rachmono litzlan.

Lev L'Achim activists sent urgent letters to various figures and issued urgent calls to rabbonim and public figures warning them not to cooperate with these missionaries, chas vesholom, whose only goal is to induce Jews to abandon their faith.

Jerusalem Mayor Rabbi Uri Lupoliansky, who participates in many international events held in Jerusalem because of his high rank, canceled his scheduled appearance at this conference after Lev L'Achim activists alerted him to the true nature of their scheme. He ordered all municipal departments not to cooperate with the group.

According to reports cult members also tried to visit official institutions and organizations in the city and were accommodated in some cases. The Jerusalem Association of Community Centers (Matnasim), for instance, even provided extensive assistance and asked heads of community administrations to host the missionaries.

Lev L'Achim has reiterated warnings to all institutions, organizations and public figures in Jerusalem not to be lured by the smooth-talking Israeli representatives in the cult and not to allow them any access to chareidi institutions. Following a report in the Hebrew edition of Yated Ne'eman on Monday many individuals contacted Lev L'Achim's anti-missionary department to thank them for publicizing warnings to limit the threat, saying cult leaders had requested to meet with them and to tour various institutions.


All material on this site is copyrighted and its use is restricted.
Click here for conditions of use.